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Quick tip for Google Chrome Users - CTRL+F

Updated on June 22, 2012
Snapshot of Google Chrome CTRL+F search box and scroll bar lines
Snapshot of Google Chrome CTRL+F search box and scroll bar lines

I never used to like the logo (that funny looking eye) but the popularity of the Google Chrome browser has grown exponentially and no wonder - the combination of search and a browser all in one is a pretty awesome combination not to mention how convenient it is to be able to type what you're searching for into the address bar.

You no longer have to go to the Google page first to find what you are searching for.

With every step Google removes from the process the more convenient search becomes for us impatient, time-poor internet users.

Moreover, tonight it got even better...Google have taken out yet another STEP.

Very impatient of me you might be thinking but, doesn't everyone want to make their life a bit easier and more time efficient? There are plenty of others like me out there!

Anyway, as I was saying, tonight my Google Chrome browser got even more updated and it's horrible eye just like ugly ET has grown even more in my affection! Funny that, eh?

Up to now I've so often searched the net only to land on the top of pages. The problem is that what I'm looking for isn't always (in fact, not often at all) at the top of a page.

Impatient surfer (that's me!) could not see what I was looking for - IMMEDIATELY - because it would be buried DEEP in the page.

Of course, in case you didn't know this tip, just PRESS & HOLD CTRL and then PRESS F on your keyboard when faced with this dilemma of what you need being buried further down the page.

This functionality in a browser is usually expressed as CTRL+F and it will work on most browsers to find a word or phrase on the current page (the page in view).

On Google Chrome you will see the drop down box come up in the right hand top corner. Type the keyword into this and you will see next to it the results (See the picture).

If you were searching for (say) a phrase like "changing Mysql datetime into day month year" (yeh right!) the number of results is probably pretty small, maybe even one only - but that's only if the phrase exists in it's entirety. You might find yourself breaking it down into smaller pieces to get to your chosen location on the page - the location you saw in the returned results in Google.

In the example, I broke the phrase down into one term "day" (See the picture) but as you can see the page has 10 instances of that word.

Of course, before CTRL +F, you could always just copy and paste the part of the page returned by Google that attracted you in the first place.

If you do this then do the CTRL +F thing you will probably get only one result and get straight to what you want but you will need to get into the habit of copying Google's returned results.

When you use Ctrl+F for a single keyword it often tells you you are looking for something which is repeated on the landing page a very large number of times.

Aaaargh! You might think impatiently. I've got to scroll through this entire page to find what I'm looking for.

Relax. it's not so bad anymore if you have to do this.

In the past, I would click the little up and down arrows (See picture again) but Google Chrome have just made my searches more convenient, or at least given me a handy alternative.

As you might notice in the picture which is a snapshot after Ctrl+F and the typing of "day", sometimes your chosen word is repeated several times but you can scroll down to those little lines crossing the scroll bar (Again, See Picture).

What are these little lines, then?

They simply represent the positions on the page of all instances of your chosen keyword or phrase. Just START SCROLLING and STOP at each one to find the next instance.

This is just an alternative to using the up and down arrow keys in the CTRL+F box.


Google (or should that be Google Chrome?) keeps taking STEPS out of the process of searching the net, it is becoming easier (i.e. quicker) to find what you are looking for not only the page but inside the page.

But here is a challenge I throw out to the developers of this great browser WITH the icky EYE!

When I get my SERPS (ie Search Engine Returned Pages) is it possible that one day I can take ONE LESS STEP and get CRTL+F by default?

This would require Google Chrome to detect I'm searching. As a developer of sorts myself, I suspect this is possible and would be a great addition.

There's more. HOW about not only the CTRL+F box by default but the box also CONTAINING the keyword(s) or phrases that occur BOTH in my initial search INPUT and on the page I've chosen to click on from the SERPS?

I.e the keywords common to both.

There is probably a lot more to think carefully about here, and some of this might not work but perhaps thinking along these lines might achieve some very desirable results for searchers - or should that be impatient searchers!

Who knows what future development will bring, but what I do know is that Google Chrome is set up for making search easier and more convenient.


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    • Dee aka Nonna profile image

      Dee aka Nonna 3 years ago

      Will I use the Chromebook more than my other computer? It is very possible. I found out that I can connect a regular keyboard to the Chromebook, and Google Docs can be very yes, possibly very soon. Thank you psychidog for asking me that.....made me really think it through.

    • profile image
      Author 3 years ago

      Cheers DEE!. Do you think you will end up using your Chromebook more than your other computer?

    • Dee aka Nonna profile image

      Dee aka Nonna 3 years ago

      I just purchased a Chromebook, and for purely selfish reasons. I, being impatient at times, placed it on my desk (workspace area) near my desktop computer. I turn to it when I want to research something quickly. I use it for other things, of course.....LOL. Thanks for this....very helpful.

    • profile image
      Author 4 years ago

      Great TKI - looks like the big players are on to it! Restoring systems to a stage before the problem has proven to be a very useful strategy which I think one can also do manually if need be.

    • toknowinfo profile image

      toknowinfo 4 years ago

      It fixed itself. I got a message that said my internet was changed without my knowledge and it asked if I wanted the original restored. I clicked it and all is back to normal. Thanks, for all your help.

    • profile image
      Author 4 years ago

      Tki -found this. Without being able to see your screen Im a little in the dark but hopefully this will work.

      Ialso found this on wikipedia when I looked up is noted and most infamous for a malware toolbar that can be surreptitiously bundled in with legitimate program installations, and which generally cannot be removed from most common browsers once installed.

    • toknowinfo profile image

      toknowinfo 4 years ago

      Hi Akram, Silly me. I was on my other computer when I thought google was working great. Still having the same problem on my other computer. It won't let me delete google. It says I must close all google programs to delete, even when none are open. I know downloaded map directions when it changed from google to

    • toknowinfo profile image

      toknowinfo 4 years ago

      Thanks Pdog, it worked. All is fine in the internet search world again. I appreciate your help so much.

    • profile image
      Author 4 years ago

      Tki I would go to your control panel and uninstall Chrome than reinstall. The only thing, you will lose history and book marks. If your worried about losing those let me know and

      I'll try to find a work around.

    • toknowinfo profile image

      toknowinfo 4 years ago

      Hi Pdog, Google chrome has been my favorite for quite a while. Recently I downloaded maps from the internet and is coming up automatically. I have to type in google at the bar at the top to do my search because is a terrible search engine. No matter what I try google does not pop up automatically. Any suggestions?

    • James McCullough profile image

      James McCullough 5 years ago from Kelowna, British Columbia

      I'm a huge fan of Google Chrome, too. Hope people make the switch after reading your hub, because it really is much better for browsing than Firefox, especially on Mac.

    • profile image
      Author 6 years ago

      Thanks Glenn, it is hard to change except once you do!...I used to use Firefox all the time till I changed and as a self-taught programmer CTRL+F has become indispensable for finding what you need in a page full of what seems like gobbledy-gook code.

      As for Google hiring me - I've been trying to get them to for ages - I'd be a great employee - I only need total freedom and a princely sum for relating my ideas whenever they strike me!

    • Glenn Stok profile image

      Glenn Stok 6 years ago from Long Island, NY

      I have Chrome installed and use it just to test my website (same as you). But I am kind of stuck with Firefox. It's hard to change. But you bought up some interesting ideas I should check out, like the scrolling thing after a 'find'. I didn't know about that one.

      As a programmer myself I could relate to your ideas. I think Google should hire you. You come up with interesting additions to consider. Voted up and useful.

    • profile image
      Author 7 years ago

      Never used it, why not, Lady E? Actually, when it first came out, I tried it and stopped using it - that horrible eye and I didn't see anything special about it. I use a number of browsers (to test websites etc). IE has great(some might say overthetop) security features but Google Chrome is my default browser, - it is so convenient for search - you just start typing into the address bar and whammo! If you want to give it a go just Google it and download.

    • Lady_E profile image

      Elena 7 years ago from London, UK

      Thanks for this. I've heard of Google Chrome but have never used it.

    • profile image
      Author 7 years ago

      Each to their own I suppose but ImChemist, if you do a lot of searching and development check out Google Chrome FULLY because there is a lot more to it than meets the eye. thanks for dropping in.

    • ImChemist profile image

      ImChemist 7 years ago

      Google chrome is good ahh , but Firefox is better (more faster and more save)